Etape du Dales

Etape du Dales

26th April 2019 - 29th April 2019 (4 days)

This is a fixed centre tour based at Hawes Youth Hostel in Wensleydale in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. The tour will take in the route of the classic Etape du Dales sportive, 175km and 3500m of climbing, which can be split neatly over 2 days. The route covers a number of famous Yorkshire Dales climbs including Fleet Moss and the Buttertubs and will take in the spectacular Ribblehead viaduct. The tour will be mostly on quiet roads with superb scenery and plenty of good cafes. This tour is suitable for riders with a good level of fitness who enjoy hilly terrain and spectacular scenery.

  • Holiday Type Guided
  • Tour Manager Lynn Bland
  • Grade Challenging
  • Booking Status Places Available
  • Accommodation Hostel
  • Board Basis Some Meals
  • Travel Arrangements Land Only
  • Road / Off Road Road
  • Holiday Style Centre-based
  • Vehicle Support Carry Own Luggage
  • Holiday Ref 01901
Etape du Dales

Friday 26th April

Arrive Hawes Youth Hostel from 5pm onwards. Stay 3 nights.

Saturday 27th April

Depart the hostel at 9am for led ride, climbing out of Hawes over the Buttertubs pass to Swaledale, then climb back up to the isolated Tan Hill pub. Continue through Keld and Kirkby Stephen, along the valley to Garsdale Head, then either back to Hawes or a steep climb up by Dent Station over into Dentdale and back to Hawes. Approx 50/60 (hilly) miles.

Sunday 28th April

Depart the hostel at 9am for led ride past the Ribblehead viaduct then through Horton In Ribblesdale and Stainforth. Up and over to Halton Gill, Arncliffe, Conistone, Kettlewell and Buckden, finishing by climbing Fleet Moss and enjoying a spectacular descent back into Hawes. Approx 50 miles.

Monday 29th April

Half day ride, then return to the hostel for 1pm when the tour ends.

Accommodation & Meals

The accommodation is at Hawes Youth Hostel overlooking Wensleydate. The hostel has 52 beds in rooms for 2 - 8 people,  a cycle store, drying room, self catering kitchen and it is licensed. Sunday evening meal isn't included in the price, but is available at the hostel.

Vehicle Support


Travel Insurance

Obtaining travel insurance is optional for UK residents as your CTC membership provides third party cover. However, this does not cover any other risks such as cancellation charges, personal injury or lost property. We therefore strongly recommend that suitable insurance is taken out to safeguard against such risks. Members who do not reside in the UK are not covered for third party and are advised to obtain suitable cover before leaving their normal residence. If you already have an annual policy, you may need to confirm that it will cover a UK holiday or make provision for it to do so.


The price of £180 is based on a minimum number of 10 people taking part in the holiday. If there are insufficient bookings by 15th February 2019, we will contact you and return all monies paid, although in certain circumstances the holiday may still run at below minimum numbers but at the same price.

Price Includes

  • 3 nights hostel, sharing room (max 3 persons to a room)
  • 3 breakfasts and 2 evening meals
  • CTC Cycling Holidays & Tours costs

Price Does Not Include

  • Travel to or from the tour
  • Sunday night evening meal
  • Drinks with evening meals
  • Lunches or refreshments at morning and afternoon stops
  • Entry fees at any attractions
  • Any other personal expenses
  • Travel Insurance

Payment Schedule

A deposit of £90 per person is payable upon booking, with the final balance of £90 per person to be paid ten weeks prior to departure, by 15th February 2019.


Should you be forced to cancel your booking for any reason you must notify us in writing. Cancellation charges are as follows:

Written notice received:

Before 15th February 2019

From 15th February 2019 through to departure


Cancellation charge:

Deposit (£90)

100% (£180)


The Area Covered By The Holiday

The Yorkshire Dales National Park covers 680 miles straddling the central Pennines in the counties of North Yorkshire and Cumbria. It is an expansive area of hill country that rises in the Millstone Grit-capped Three Peaks to over 2,300ft (700 metres). This tour will cover a large part of the National Park providing the opportunity to ride along valley roads, across open moorland and through typical Dales villages.

Rides & Rest Days

Each day's ride covers about 55 miles and is challenging due to the many hills. Apart from a few stretches of main road we will cycle on quiet lanes. Yorkshire Dales lanes are sometimes narrow and steep, with variable surfaces.
The rides normally take all day, with two café stops. People’s speeds up-hill will inevitably vary, but we will regroup at suitable points. Depending on the group, we may split into smaller groups to accommodate different paces, and meet at a café, or in a village.  Mostly we will be sightseeing from the saddle, but occasionally there will be the opportunity for a quick look at a historical feature or a viewpoint.
If you want to do more sightseeing on one of the days you are welcome to cycle independently,  or have a rest day if you wish.  Route-sheets will be provided, but you should bring a Yorkshire Dales map.

Accommodation & Meals

Accommodation will be in small dormitories (2 or 3 beds).  Bedding is provided.
Sunday evening meal is not included in the tour price so we can sample some of the fine food and real ales at  the Crown Hotel.  If you prefer a meal can be obtained at the Youth Hostel, the chip shop or one of the other pubs in Hawes.  The Youth Hostel also has a self-catering kitchen.
A substantial breakfast is provided each day, and evening meals (3-course, with a choice) are provided in the Youth Hostel on Friday and Saturday. 
During the day we will stop at a café for morning coffee and lunch. Lunch may be quite late, so it is important to carry basic snacks (energy bars, bananas) as well as a water-bottle.

Group Information

The maximum number of participants will be 16 excluding the Tour Manager.

Weather & Clothing

Being April, the weather could be cold, and possibly wet. Going uphill, and in sheltered places, it can be warm, then cold in exposed places or descending.  Bring a variety of layers which can be combined to cope with variable temperatures, and a change of clothes and shoes for evenings in the Hostel.

Cycles & Equipment

A touring or sporty cycle is recommended or an MTB with road tyres. The main requirement is a good range of gears to cope with the steep hills. A triple is recommended or a compact if you are very fit. (For a low bottom gear, many of us have a small chain ring the same size or smaller than the largest cog on our rear wheel). If in doubt, please discuss with the Tour Manager before the tour.
You should ensure that your cycle is in good working order, particularly wheels, tyres and brakes. You should also carry sufficient spare tubes and tools to deal with punctures and minor repairs.
You will not need to carry luggage, but a rack top pack or bar bag will be useful for carrying wet weather gear, spare clothing needed for the day, camera, snacks and your map.

Maps & Guides

You should carry a map in case you become separated from the group. The area is covered by the Goldeneye laminated cycling map Yorkshire Dales (1:100,000), or the Harvey Yorkshire Dales for cyclists